Deborah Adeyanju, CFA, Senior Advisor & Impact Strategist
You only have to spend five minutes watching the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to understand the entrenched gender imbalances and racial hostility women, particularly those of color, are up against. Women who by dint of their hard work, high educational attainment, and career aspirations reach or are considered for the highest professional ranks are viewed more harshly and face much more scrutiny and undeserved criticism than their white male counterparts do.
This is even more true for Black women. The fact that this is all playing out during Women’s History Month is not lost on us. During the course of the hearings, Judge Jackson has been repeatedly interrupted, talked over, questioned regarding her credentials, and reminded in various ways that she is not a member of the club.
What does this have to do with financial planning? As one of only a handful of Black-owned and run registered investment advisors (RIA), we understand the importance of fully utilizing human capital – and the economic and social costs of racial and gender inequity. In an effort to better serve our clients, a significant proportion of whom identify as Black women, and dismayed by the lack of existing investable opportunities with an explicitly racial equity lens, we developed a framework and an investing strategy to address this gap in the market.
Our racial equity investing strategy is unique in that it centers the voices of women of color. Why? One, because companies that do right by Black women should exhibit better financial performance than those that don’t. Two, because multiple studies find Black women in particular face the most adversity in their careers, whether it’s finding internal sponsorship, getting access to promotional opportunities, or simply being paid as much as men are.
As the hearings wrap up, we applaud Judge Jackson’s composure, and we look forward to the day when every female nominee is accorded equal treatment to that of her white, male counterparts. In the meantime, by voting with our investment dollars, directing them to companies that recruit, retain, support, and promote Black women, we expect to advance racial and gender equity while earning competitive investment returns.
Want to learn more about mission-driven investing? Read our previous posts: Racial Equity Investing: What it is and Why it Matters, and Gender-Lens Investing: What it is and Why it Matters, or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
GRID 202 Partners is an African-American and woman-owned Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) specializing in fee-based, comprehensive financial and investment planning for individuals, couples, businesses and institutions. We serve successful, ambitious professionals and business owners, mission-driven organizations, and households that are committed both to creating wealth for themselves and future generations and to aligning their financial assets with their social impact objectives